Drug-Resistant Superbug Spreading In Hospitals – Study

 

A superbug resistant to all known antibiotics that can cause “severe” infections or even death is spreading undetected through hospital wards across the world, scientists in Australia warned on Monday.

Researchers at the University of Melbourne discovered three variants of the multidrug-resistant bug in samples from 10 countries, including strains in Europe that cannot be reliably tamed by any drug currently on the market.

“We started with samples in Australia but did a global snapshot and found that it’s in many countries and many institutions around the world,” Ben Howden, director of the university’s Microbiological Diagnostic Unit Public Health Laboratory told AFP.

“It seems to have spread.”

The bacteria, known as Staphylococcus epidermidis, is related to the better-known and more deadly MRSA.

It’s found naturally on human skin and most commonly infects the elderly or patients who have had prosthetic materials implanted, such as catheters and joint replacements.

“It can be deadly, but it’s usually in patients who already are very sick in hospital… it can be quite hard to eradicate and the infections can be severe,” Howden said.

His team looked at hundreds of S. epidermidis specimens from 78 hospitals worldwide.

They found that some strains of the bug made a small change in its DNA that led to resistance to two of the most common antibiotics, often administered in tandem to treat hospital infections.

“These two antibiotics are unrelated and you would not expect one mutation to cause both antibiotics to fail,” said Jean Lee, a PhD student at Melbourne’s Doherty Institute, and co-author of the study.

Many of the most powerful antibiotics are extremely expensive and even toxic, and the team behind the study said that the practice of using multiple drugs at once to prevent resistance may not be working.

‘Biggest danger’

The researchers said they believe the superbug is spreading rapidly due to the particularly high use of antibiotics in intensive care units, where patients are sickest and strong drugs are prescribed as routine.

The World Health Organization has long warned of antibiotic overuse sparking new strains of killer, drug-resistant bacteria.

Another Australian study, published last month, suggested some hospital superbugs are growing increasingly tolerant to alcohol-based disinfectants found in handwashes and sanitisers used on hospital wards.

Howden said his study, published in the journal Nature Microbiology, showed the need for better understanding of how infections spread and which bacteria hospitals choose to target.

“This highlights that the use of more and more antibiotics is driving more drug-resistant bacteria,” he said.

“With all bacteria in a hospital environment we are driving more resistant strains and there’s no doubt that antibiotic resistance is one of the biggest dangers to hospital care worldwide.”

W.H.O Tells Farmers To Stop Using Antibiotics On Healthy Animals

courtesy: thesagenews.com

The World Health Organization (W.H.O) has urged farmers on Tuesday to stop using antibiotics to promote growth and prevent disease in healthy animals because the practice fuels dangerous drug-resistant superbug infections in people.

Describing a lack of effective antibiotics for humans as “a security threat” on a par with “a sudden and deadly disease outbreak”, WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said “strong and sustained action across all sectors” was vital to turn back the tide of resistance and “keep the world safe”.

The WHO “strongly recommends an overall reduction in the use of all classes of medically important antibiotics in food-producing animals, including complete restriction of these antibiotics for growth promotion and disease prevention without diagnosis,” the United Nations agency said in a statement.

Any use of antibiotics promotes the development and spread of so-called superbugs — multi-drug-resistant infections that can evade the medicines designed to kill them.

According to the WHO’s statement, in some countries, around 80 percent of total consumption of medically important antibiotics is in the animal sector. They are largely used in healthy animals to stop them getting sick and to speed up their growth.

The WHO said such use should be halted completely. In sick animals, it added, wherever possible, tests should first be conducted to determine the most effective and prudent antibiotic to treat their specific infection.

Some countries have already taken action to reduce the use of antibiotics in food-producing animals. The European Union has since 2006 banned the use of the drugs for growth promotion.

Consumers are also driving a demand for meat raised without routine use of antibiotics, with some major food chains adopting ‘antibiotic-free’ policies for meat supplies.

The WHO said alternatives to using antibiotics for disease prevention in animals include improving hygiene and farming practices, and making better use of vaccines.

Ondo Task Force Tackles Fake Drugs Sales

drugs in ondoMembers of the Ondo State Task Force against Counterfeit and Substandard Drugs have launched actions against the sale and consumption of fake and counterfeit drugs in the State.

The State Commissioner for Health, Dr. Dayo Adeyanju, who led the team to some pharmacies and patent medicine stores in Akure, the State Capital, said the government was out to ensure that all the drugs sold in the state were of standard quality.

The team visited pharmacies and patent medicine stores in the city with a Truscan Machine to test the quality and originality of the drugs being sold to the members of the public.

The team visited the pharmacy of the State Specialist Hospital, where all the drugs tested passed, indicating they were of standard quality.

The test was carried out on antimalarial, antibiotics and analgesics.

Dr. Adeyanju explained that the operators of pharmacies visited that had drugs that failed the test had been directed to remove the drugs from stock. According to him, further tests would be carried out on them.

He warned that any pharmacy or patent medicine store found selling illicit drugs would be arrested and their premises shut.

On his part, the State Coordinator of the National Agency for Foods Drugs Administration and Control (NAFDAC), Wole Ojo, noted that “any drug that fails the test will be mopped up and destroyed by the agency”, adding that those selling such drugs will be surcharged.

According to him, the crusade has started in Ifon, Ose Local Government Area of the State and it would be taken to all the towns and ‎villages across the state.

One of the stores visited for inspection was shut down by NAFDAC for selling injection equipment without due authorisation.